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Suffolk County Lawmaker Wants To Ban ‘Revenge Porn’

Posting Private Graphic Pics, Videos Punishable By Jail Time, Fine

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – So-called “revenge porn” could become illegal in New York.

On Thursday, State Sen. Phil Boyle (R-Bay Shore) introduced a bill that would make it a misdemeanor to post private, graphic photos and videos online to humiliate someone.

The violation would be punishable by up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. Another bill before the state Assembly would impose a $30,000 fine.

California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a revenge porn bill into law on Wednesday.

Boyle said unlike the new California law, the New York measure includes pictures or videos taken by victims.

“If a young woman takes a picture of herself, sends it to the boyfriend, a couple of years later he’s posting it, that would be included under our legislation and that’s a very significant improvement in the law,” Boyle told 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera. “Remember, 80 percent of these pictures are ‘selfies.'”

Similar laws also exist in Florida and Texas.

Finding the pictures online can be a humiliating experience, Holly Toup said.

“I think I stopped breathing for a while. It was humiliating to say the least. I didn’t want to go anywhere,” she said.

Boyle told CBS 2’s Carolyn Gusoff that the women on these websites are being victimized by former romantic partners.

“These women do not ask to be victims. They are made victims by their psycho ex-boyfriends and ex-husbands and it ruins their lives, potentially,” he said.

The problem can go beyond simple embarrassment. When pictures are posted along with names and addresses, jobs can be lost or worse, according to victims advocates.

“Some people have had to change their names because every time their name is typed into a search engine these are the hits that come up. And, in the most extreme and tragic cases, we have seen victims commit suicide,” an advocate explained.

Legislators in New Jersey, Florida, and Louisiana are drafting similar laws.

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